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Working paper: Liquidity Constraints in the U.S. Housing Market

We show that U.S. housing wealth is very illiquid despite all the instruments for extracting home equity available to homeowners. We come to this conclusion by studying the implications of liquidity constraints in a quantitative life-cycle model in which we explicitly account for key institutional details of the U.S. housing and mortgage markets. We find that mortgage market frictions that prevent homeowners from tapping into home equity are sizeable and that most homeowners keep their consumption low for precautionary reasons.


Working Paper: Risk and risk weights

The paper studies the relationship between the riskiness of banks' assets and their average risk weight. Risk weights explain about half of the variation in projected credit losses in the 2018 European Banking Authority stress test, and show a clear relationship with estimates of banks' asset volatilities. However, risk weights do a worse job of explaining future credit losses than do asset volatilities, especially for banks using internal models.


Prices are rising less than many people think

Prices of food, clothing, restaurant meals, laundry, rent and other elements of household consumption are rising much less than many Danes think. In other words, the Danes overestimate the rate of inflation – but not as much as people in EU do on average. This appears from a Working Paper prepared by Kim Abildgren, Chief Adviser, and Andreas Kuchler, Senior Economist, from Danmarks Nationalbank.


Working Paper: Revisiting the inflation perception conundrum

The level of inflation perceived by Danish households persistently exceed observed inflation levels measured by official Consumer Price Indices. Accounting for even several of the factors usually put forward to explain the overestimation bias can only reduce it slightly. Food prices carry a larger weight in perceived inflation than in the official CPI, and we find clear seasonal effects in the inflation perception bias. The bias is also reflected in the households' expectations of the future inflation level, but we find a much smaller bias in the expectations regarding future changes in inflation rates.


Strong growth, but reforms are required

Growth has been high for some years, a trend that is set to continue. This is mainly attributable to fisheries. Unemployment is very low, and large-scale airport investments in the coming years will increase pressures in the labour market. Despite government surpluses and modest government debt, there is a need to develop a broader business sector and strengthen government finances substantially in the coming years.


Capital buffer must be ahead of the financial cycle

If you want to hit a moving target, you must aim ahead of the target, not at its current position. This principle applies just as well when playing dodgeball at school as when shooting down enemy missiles in wartime. It also applies when policymakers determine the banks' capital buffer level required to weather hard times. They must look at the direction in which the financial development is moving, rather than at its current state.


Working Paper: Ahead of the Cycle

The paper describes how to conduct macroprudential policy in an environment where economic indicators move in a cyclical fashion, policy works with a lag, and there are adjustment costs to changing policy. It shows that policy instruments such as the countercyclical capital buffer should be set not only based on the present state of the cycle, but also on where the cycle is heading.


Betalingsservice Assessment

Danmarks Nationalbank has assessed Betalingsservice, which is owned and operated by Nets, against the standards for direct debit schemes established by the European Central Bank, ECB. Danmarks Nationalbank's overall assessment is that Nets has ensured that Betalingsservice extensively complies with the ECB requirements. At the same time, Danmarks Nationalbank has recommendations and remarks on how to strengthen Nets' management and operation of Betalingsservice. Inter alia, Danmarks Nationalbank recommends that Nets strengthen the compliance area and formalise its requirements for the critical suppliers' risk management. It is also remarked that the transparency of the fee structure will be enhanced if the firms clearly show their own fees to the consumers. Nets can be conducive to ensuring this. Danmarks Nationalbank oversees the payment and settlement systems in Denmark in order to promote safe and efficient settlement of payments, securities trades, etc. Betalingsservice is one of the solutions subject to this oversight.


Working Paper: Modeling Persistent Interest Rates with Volatility-Induced Stationarity

We propose a new model for the term structure of interest rates, which embraces the extreme persistence observed in interest rate data. This is achieved by introducing so-called volatility-induced stationarity. We apply the model to U.S. Treasury bond yield data and show that volatility-induced stationarity improves estimation of term premia and forecasting of interest rates compared to existing models.


The market can see through media framing

Stock market investors react only on the objective facts and not the spin in media articles, a new working paper from Danmarks Nationalbank shows.


Working Paper: Seeing Through the Spin: The Effect of News Sentiment on Firms' Stock Market Performance

We show that Stock market investors react only on the objective facts and not the spin in media articles. We use natural language processing tools to compute the tone of 288 thousands articles written by Reuters between 2000 and 2018, and show that it predicts the short-term stock market performance of companies. However, by exploiting a combination of unsupervised machine learning and econometric techniques, we show that this effect is only due to the informational content of the article, and not the framing of that article. The market sees through media spin and can filter informational content from irrelevant tone.


Outlook for the Danish economy - Slightly lower growth in the coming years

The Danish economy has been in a boom phase in recent years. Over time, weaker growth abroad will affect the Danish economy, and prospects are for slightly lower growth rates over the coming years. The labour market is showing the first signs of a slowdown. The boom has evolved without considerable imbalances building up, and the Danish economy is well prepared for a slowdown. Slightly lower growth during a boom period is not an indication that fiscal policy should be eased.


Monetary and financial trends - Decline in interest rates and refinancing boom

In September, Danmarks Nationalbank lowered the interest rate on certificates of deposit by 10 basis points to -0.75 per cent. The interest rate reduction is a consequence of the reduction by the European Central Bank of its key monetary policy rate by 10 basis points. The krone rate remains stable, being slightly on the weak side of the central rate. Overall, financial conditions are accommodative and support the ongoing economic upswing. Declining interest rates have triggered a new refinancing boom during which many households have opted for lower-rate home loans. Credit growth remains moderate and has slowed slightly in 2019.


Trade conflict does not eliminate US current account deficit

The US has a current account deficit and president Donald Trump has an explicit goal of reducing it. However, new trade agreements and new tariffs do not remove the deficit, as the current account is basically determined by the balance between total savings and investments in the US. The growing public budget deficit, on the other hand, tends to increase the US deficit, but a large international demand for dollars helps keeping costs down.


Mortgage refinancing supports private consumption

Falling mortgage rates have made mortgage refinancing attractive in order to reduce overall home financing costs. Many homeowners raise additional mortgage debt when refinancing. The additional funds are used for increased consumption and home improvements. However, some homeowners spend the funds on reducing other debt or building up a liquidity buffer.


Macroeconomic and financial policy tools for climate change mitigation

Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time, requiring a large-scale economic transition in many areas, shows a review of the rapidly growing number of scientific articles and books on this subject, presented in a working paper.


Working Paper: Macroeconomic and financial policies for climate change mitigation: A review of the literature

Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of this century. Mitigation requires a large-scale transition to a low-carbon economy. This paper provides an overview of the rapidly growing literature on the role of macroeconomic and financial policy tools in enabling this transition.


Heightened risk of a global recession

Recession probabilities in the USA and the euro area have risen to high levels in recent years. A global downturn will affect a small open economy like Denmark. The risk of recession in Denmark has risen in line with the risk abroad, but the Danish economy is poised well-positioned to withstand a potential global economic downturn.


Strong business investment appetite

Over the past decade, business investment appetite has been in line with that experienced during previous crises and upswings. Investment has increased as spare production capacity has been absorbed. During the crisis and post-crisis years, investment was mainly constrained by high economic uncertainty and low foreign demand for Danish products. Since the mid-1990s, the growing weight of the service sectors in the Danish economy has structurally reduced investment.


Central government borrowing strategy in the 2nd half of 2019

The target for issuance of domestic government bonds in 2019 is increased to kr. 75 billion due to an increase in the central government's purchases of government-guaranteed mortgage bonds. The expected average sales of government bonds per auction are around kr. 3 billion at market value. The on-the-run issues will remain unchanged and focus will be on issuance in the 2-year and 10-year nominal bonds.


The natural real interest rate in Denmark has declined

The natural real interest rate has declined since the 1990s. An important explanation is demographic trends in Denmark and abroad, which can be expected to continue in the coming years. Among other factors, lower natural interest rates have prompted central banks in several countries to apply unconventional monetary policies in order to stimulate the economy and increase inflation. Spillover effects from similar measures could affect the Danish economy in the future.


Working Paper: Real Effects of Relaxing Financial Constraints for Homeowners: Evidence from Danish Firms

We study how the introduction of interest-only mortgages in 2003 affected job creation and the skill composition of the workforce over the business cycle. The reform significantly increased household expenditure and firms reacted to this demand shock by creating jobs. These positions, however, are classified as low-skilled occupations, filled by younger and less educated workers who face earlier separations and a higher degree of unemployment ex-post.


A small number of participants dominate the interbank market

The analysis looks at the complex network created when the financial institutions exchange many thousands of transactions across the Danish interbank market. The analysis shows that there is a core consisting of a few institutions which are important in terms of spreading liquidity, and that a small number of institutions alone connect isolated institutions with the rest of the network. The interconnectedness of the network emphasise the importance of having robust central participants.


Oversight of the financial infrastructure 2018

The report presents the conclusions from Danmarks Nationalbank's oversight of the Danish payments infrastructure in 2018. Two major system changes were introduced with the implementation of Kronos2 and the migration of kroner to the trans-European securities platform, T2S. The core payment and settlement systems and most important payment solutions extensively comply with international standards for efficiency and security. Cyber risk management was still a focus area of Danmarks Nationalbank's oversight. The maturity of the systems' cyber security efforts varies.


Prospects of lower earnings and higher capital requirements for banks

The systemic credit institutions' results remain high, underpinned by low loan impairment charges since 2010. A substantial dampening of economic growth would lead to higher loan impairment charges and consequently lower earnings in future. The requirements for banks' capital structure are likely to be tightened considerably in the coming years. This may put pressure on the systemic credit institutions' excess capital adequacy if they fail to build up further capital adequacy beforehand.


Banks face new requirements in the stress test

Danmarks Nationalbanks conducts a semi-annual stress test of the Danish banking sector. The stress test shows that the systemic banks satisfy their risk-based capital requirements and the leverage ratio requirement in a severe recession scenario. The analysis also looks at the banks' ability to satisfy MREL under stress and shows that the systemic banks depend on being able to continue to issue MREL-eligible instruments in order to satisfy the requirement.


Lower growth may cause bank earnings to fall

Economic growth continues in Denmark and many other parts of the world, but the pace is set to slowdown in the coming years. A substantial dampening of economic growth would lead to higher loan impairment charges and consequently lower earnings in the banks in the future, Danmarks Nationalbank points out in its semi-annual analysis of financial stability in Denmark.


Working Paper: The effects of macroprudential policies on house price cycles in an agent-based model of the Danish housing market

In this paper an agent-based model is used to investigate how tightening loan-to-value and loan-to-income ratios affects house price cycles. The use of an agent-based model allows for the analysis of the effects of these policies on heterogeneous households. I find that these policies reduce house price cycles in a non-linear way that depends crucially on the distribution of households and highlights the importance of macroprudential policymakers taking into account the distributions of households.


Working Paper: Multiple credit constraints and time-varying macroeconomic dynamics

I build a DSGE model where households face a loan-to-value (LTV) constraint and a debt-service-to-income (DTI) constraint. From an estimation of the model, I infer when each constraint was binding over the 1975-2017 timespan in the U.S. I also infer that DTI standards were relaxed during the mid-2000s credit boom. In the light of this, the boom could have been avoided by tighter DTI limits, but not by tighter LTV limits. The role of multiple credit constraints for the emergence of nonlinear dynamics is corroborated by county panel data.


Liquidity stress test shows that Kronos is resilient

Kronos is Danmarks Nationalbank's payment system for large-value time-critical payments and it is the heart of the Danish financial infrastructure. The analysis assesses the robustness of the system, measured as the change in participants' liquidity needs as well as their ability to settle payments in a timely manner when the system is exposed to stress in three different scenarios: (1) One large participant cannot submit payments for a full business day, (2) the money market is inaccessible, and (3) the participants' access to intraday credit is reduced. The analysis shows that the system is resilient in all three scenarios.


Increasing equity prices support investments

This analysis shows how fluctuations in equity prices affect business in-vestments in fixed capital via a "Tobin's Q channel". The main conclusion is that an increase of 10 per cent in the prices of Danish listed firms leads to an increase of 1.8 per cent in those firms' investments.


Oversight policy 2019

It is important to society that payments and securities transactions can be affected in a safe and efficient manner. Danmarks Nationalbank contributes to this process by overseeing important parts of the financial infrastructure. Danmarks Nationalbank's policy for oversight is set out in this document.


The Danish economy is well prepared for external risks

The upswing in the Danish economy continues for the sixth consecutive year, and so far it has been balanced. The boom is also set to continue in the coming years, but at a slightly slower pace. This is only natural after several very good years.


Outlook for the danish economy - The Danish economy is heading deeper into the boom

The Danish economy is in a balanced upswing for the sixth year in a row. Economic growth is deemed to continue at a more steady pace. The economy is well prepared for addressing the current risks, including some dampening of growth abroad. It is important for the structural reforms implemented and the objective of structural balance of public finances in 2021 to be maintained. The expected dampening of growth does not call for expansionary fiscal measures.


The impact of the housing taxation agreement on house prices

The housing taxation agreement from 2017 contributes to higher prices for single-family houses and lower prices for owner-occupied flats towards 2022.


Monetary and financial trends - Low interest rates supports the upswing

The krone exchange rate is very close to the central rate. Danmarks Nationalbank bought kroner in December 2018 and January 2019 after a gradual weakening of the krone during 2018. Monetary policy and the broader financial conditions are accommodative and support the current economic expansion. Borrowing rates for the real economy have been falling for a number of years, but credit growth remains moderate, and overall corporations and households have strengthened their financial balances through the economic expansion.


Annual report 2018

Danmarks Nationalbank's accounts for 2018 show a loss of kr. 24 million, compared with a loss of kr. 254 million in 2017. Danmarks Nationalbank’s revenue is subject to structural pressure from negative interest rates. The loss not being greater is i.a. due to the temporary exchange rate gain of kr. 1.4 billion as a consequence of the strengthening of the euro against.


Payments involve considerable economies of scale

This analysis presents the marginal social costs for domestic consumer-to-business, C2B, payments. The analysis covers cash payments and payment cards.


Working Paper: A new model for money demand in Denmark: Money demand in a negative interest rate environment

Within a cointegrated VAR framework I show that the traditional money-demand relation can no longer explain the recent development of monetary aggregates in Denmark. Instead, I argue that the introduction of housing wealth and the role of precautionary demand for liquidity improves both the explanatory power of money demand and the stability of the long-run estimates. Finally, I show that the negative interest rate environment has not affected the underlying determination of money demand.


The mobile phone has contributed to reducing the costs of person-to-person payments

This analysis presents for the first time the social costs of domestic per-son-to-person transfers in Denmark. The analysis includes the most com-mon methods of person-to-person transfers: mobile payments, cash payments and credit transfers.


Business-to-business payments entailed social costs of kr. 4.2 billion

This analysis presents the social costs of domestic business-to-business payments in Denmark. The analysis includes the most common methods of payments between firms which are credit transfers, card payments, and direct debits.


The mobile phone has contributed to reducing the costs of person-to-person payments

For person-to-person, P2P, payments, mobile payment is the method that entails the lowest social costs. One of the reasons is that payment by mobile phone has become very popular for settling P2P accounts.


The riskiness of corporate credit allocation is increasing

The analysis assesses the build-up of riskiness of corporate credit allocation using an indicator based on firms' financial statements. The indicator shows an increase in the riskiness of credit allocation in the most recent upswings. Overall, riskiness was lower in 2017 than in the pre-crisis period, however. Similar development is seen across industries. Unlike in the pre-crisis period, no particular industry stands out.


Homeowners increase their borrowing and spending when house prices rise

Many Danish homeowners convert rising house prices into spending by increasing their mortgage debt. They do this by refinancing existing mortgages or raising additional loans, thereby translating home equity into liquid funds. Rising prices of owner-occupied homes thus provide scope for increased consumer spending or e.g. repayment of other debt.


Working Paper: Housing as collateral and home-equity extraction

We study the effect of house price developments on home-equity extraction and household expenditure, exploiting data covering the population of Danish homeowners between 2009 and 2016. Our findings indicate that house price increases affect home-equity extraction – and more so for homeowners close to their borrowing limits. Furthermore, the effect of house prices on expenditure is entirely driven by home-equity extraction. Our results indicate that the mortgage system plays an important role for the transmission of housing wealth increases to the real economy.


Danish government borrowing and debt 2018

Denmark's government debt policy has been characterised by four years of very low funding costs and declining debt. In 2018, the central government debt fell to 19 per cent of GDP. The central government saves considerable interest costs by granting on-lending and buying bonds to finance social housing. At the same time, it contributes to supporting the market for government securities. Market liquidity is also supported by the central government's activity in the secondary market and by a well-functioning primary dealer model.


Working Paper: Macro-financial linkages in a SVAR model with application to Denmark

We analyse macro-financial linkages in the Danish economy by estimating a structural VAR model. We construct a new financial condition index for the Danish economy. We find that financial conditions stimulated GDP before the financial crisis and deepened the subsequent recession. In recent years, financial conditions have contributed to the expansion in Denmark.


Working Paper: Housing wealth effects and mortgage borrowing

We investigate the co-movement of house prices, home equity extraction and consumption in Denmark. Using survey data we develop a measure for unanticipated house price changes which can be merged on Danish administrative data. Thus, we can show how home owners who experience an unexpected positive house price shock extract home equity and increase spending. We find that the effect is driven by home owners who could potentially benefit from refinancing existing mortgages. This indicates that the wealth effect is intimately connected to the functioning of the mortgage market.


Can texts in annual reports predict whether a firm will enter into distress?

Normally the numerical financial data of a firm is scrutinised when the soundness of the firm is assessed. But texts in the annual reports may also contain important information that can help to predict distress events.


Text-based machine learning improves distress modelling

Machine learning methods make data modelling more flexible and enable the use of unstructured data, which conventional statistical methods do not permit to the same extent. If such methods are used to include auditors' reports and managements' statements from firms' annual reports when calculating their probability of distress, the accuracy of the calculation is increased considerably. Especially the auditors' reports contribute useful information.


The krone rate has modest impact on the current account

The analysis examines the extent to which the krone exchange rate affects the current account. The krone rate turns out to have only a modest impact on the current account and it comes with a lag. Although globalisation has increased trade with the rest of the world and has resulted in production chains being split across countries, the impact of the krone rate to the current account has been stable over time. In the long term, the current account is driven by factors other than the krone rate.


Intra-EU labour mobility dampens cyclical pressures

The enlargements of the EU led to large labour migration flows from Eastern to Western Europe which expanded the labour force considerably in several of the countries currently experiencing labour shortages. The analysis indicates that when the unemployment gap narrows by 1 percentage point, inflows of EU labour increase the labour force in an EU country by 0.1 per cent p.a. This has a certain countercyclical impact. Large income differences exist between Eastern and Western Europe. As a result, Western European firms are still able to attract EU labour during boom periods.


Working Paper: Firm-level Entry and Exit over the Danish Business Cycle

We use micro level registry data to study firm dynamics in Denmark. Similar to findings for the US, young firms are more likely to exit and to grow faster over time but Danish firms also take longer to reach maturity. We do not observe any signs of a slowdown in the entry rate or long-run scarring effects on firms entering in recessions. However, fluctuations in the entry rate have persistent effects on the long-run aggregate volume of value added.


Tests are to increase cyber resilience in Denmark

Danmarks Nationalbank and the financial sector have joined forces to establish TIBER-DK, a programme for testing the most important Danish banks and essential parts of the financial infrastructure. The aim is to increase cyber resilience and promote financial stability.


Central government borrowing strategy in 2019

The target for sales of domestic government bonds and T-bills in 2019 is kr. 65 billion and kr. 30 billion, respectively. This is unchanged from 2018. Issuance will be focused in the 2- and 10-year maturity segments. On 23 January, a new 10-year bond with maturity in 2029 will be opened. A new 2-year bond with maturity in 2022 will also be opened in the 1st half of the year.


New financing of social housing strengthens the market for Danish government securities

In 2018, the central government has purchased all government-guaranteed mortgage bonds issued for financing social housing. The government will also bid for such bonds in 2019. The purchases allow the central government to build up series of liquid government securities and maintain a broad range of on-the-run issues. The government’s interest rate risk is independent of the coupon and maturity of the bonds purchased.


Working Paper: Consistency between household-level consumption data from registers and surveys

We explore the consistency at household-level between register-imputed and survey-based consumption figures for Denmark over the period 2002-15. We find that the marginal propensities to consume out of income estimated on the basis of register data are not significantly different to those estimated on the basis of survey data.


MREL for mortgage credit institutions: necessary and inexpensive

Despite the introduction of a minimum requirement of 8 per cent of total liabilities and own funds, the requirements for some SIFIs remain too low to enable recapitalisation and continuation in a crisis situation. A risk-sensitive MREL for mortgage credit institutions is necessary in order to ensure that there are sufficient funds to resolve them in a crisis situation. The cost of introducing an MREL for mortgage credit institutions is low. Converted into an increase in administration margins, it corresponds to an increase of less than 1 basis point on average.


Medium-sized banks are expanding in growth areas

The medium-sized banks have expanded their activities in Aarhus and Copenhagen by opening branches and increasing their lending for housing purposes substantially. While the number of bank branches in Denmark has generally been falling for several years, the medium-sized banks have opened an additional 19 branches since 2012, most of them in growth areas such as Aarhus and Copenhagen.


Low interest rates and ample lending capacity put pressure on credit standards

Overall, lending growth is limited, but the medium-sized banks have opened new branches and substantially increased lending for housing purposes in growth areas. It is important for the banks to allow for potential risks associated with entering into new market areas and to refrain from using credit standards as a competition parameter. Money laundering problems have spelled out the need for increased focus on measures to combat illegal activities. Efficient anti-money laundering measures call for stronger cross-border cooperation.


The largest banks satisfy capital requirements in stress test

Danmarks Nationalbank's semi-annual stress test of the Danish banking sector shows that the largest banks satisfy all capital requirements in a severe recession scenario. The analysis also describes Danmarks Nationalbank's approach to making the adverse scenario countercyclical.


Greenlandic economy - Strong growth and labour shortages

Economic growth in Greenland is high these years, and this is set to continue. The main reasons are high fish prices and larger catches. Fisheries are mainly sustainable. Unemployment is low and the risk of overheating high. Consequently, there is a need for tight fiscal policy, and large-scale investments in airports should preferably be implemented gradually. Long-term economic development requires a broader business sector, a labour force with higher qualifications and increased productivity.


The banking union is not centred round joint liability

Neither the banking union nor the Economic and Monetary Union, EMU, is centred round joint liability. That is why concerns about ”footing the bill” for bank rescues in other member states should not be the key issue in an assessment of the pros and cons of Danish participation.


Impacts of 2016 guidelines on mortgaging of homes

Since the financial crisis, there has been increased focus on making the financial sector more resilient. One of the tools for achieving this objective is the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority's guidelines from 2016 on prudent credit assessment when granting housing loans in growth areas. These guidelines have made borrowers in growth areas borrow less than borrowers outside the growth areas, but the impact is modest. The modest impact may be due to slow implementation, scope for deviation from the guidelines and the fact that the guidelines were in line with best practice in the institutions.


Faroese economy - Mounting pressures in the labour market

The Faroese economy is booming, and labour market pressures are high. Fiscal policy should dampen demand in order to mitigate the risk of the economy overheating. Furthermore, the framework of local government finances should be tightened to ensure that the conditions are in place for fiscal policy to have a stabilising effect on the economy in future. The booming economy means that now is a good time to make public finances ready to tackle the higher expenditure associated with the ageing population in the coming decades.


Working Paper: Predicting distresses using deep learning of text segments in annual reports

We develop a probability-of-default model for Danish corporate firms based on deep learning that employs the managements' statements and auditors' reports of the annual reports in addition to the numerical financial variables. Our results show that the text segments provide a statistically significant enhancement of the prediction accuracy compared to models that do not employ the text segments, in particular for large firms. Our results furthermore show that the auditors' reports contain more relevant information than the managements' statements.

​​​​​​​​​​Since 2014 Danmarks Nationalbank´s publications are issued only in electronic versions as PDF files and most of them also as ePub to use on tablets and smartphones. The electronic alternatives are of high quality, and there are many options for reading the publivations on electronic devices.​ 

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Text may be copied from Danmarks Nationalbank's publications, provided that Danmarks Nationalbank is specifically stated as the source. Changes to or misrepresentation of the content are not permitted